I like you a lot. Without you, I’d be lost at CMU. That’s not true. Without you, I would have taken longer to find “my place”, which is to say, my friends, but I would have found them eventually, unless I was totally in the wrong university, in which case maybe I would have transferred. But all the great folks in SnS have shown me that I’m not in the wrong university.
However, now that I’ve found said niche, I’d like some time back! See, in the end, I’m not one of the 10% of SnS who wants to go on to a Broadway career. I just act to have fun, which is to say, to meet people. I’ve acted in seven shows (as five bit parts and two old men) and am about to start my eighth (as an old man). Of those, maybe two have been great experiences (WASP and Little Footsteps, my two “old men” roles), three have been “why the hell am I in a musical” experiences (The Wiz, Children of Eden, and City of Angels), and two have been sort of fun-to-hang-out-I-guess bit parts where I did a lot of sitting backstage (SotR ‘06 and The Lounge). Not to say they haven’t been fun, or I didn’t love the people doing them (have I mentioned that I like SnS because of the people?) but, you know, bit parts are hard.
So why have I stuck with it? (SnS: it hits because it loves) I don’t know! Maybe because I don’t want to be a mooch. I could hang around the SnS people (because I’ve made friends here) without doing shows, but then I’d feel a little out of the loop and I’d feel like I’m not contributing anything. But more likely, it’s because I’m still in the “world is a resume” mindset, which (to quote The Lounge) “is so fucked!”
I have to realize that some people can be interesting without being in whatever organizations. It’s true that there is a correlation between being cool and being involved. However, you can also be cool without being super-involved with everything. Say you are secretly an awesome cook. Or you go camping in neat parks. Or you carve your own canoes in your spare time. Whatever.
Beej is right though: it sorta eats up your undergrad experience. And boy, I’m glad I’ve done it, because SnS/CMU has been (and still is) a blast. But it makes me wonder what would have been, had I not been socializing with SnS so exclusively.
(answer: probably nothing. what would I do, join a frat? a sports team? the tartan? GCS? come on! all are lamer options.)
This is a little meandering, because I have Pascal’s syndrome: “If I had more time, I would have written you a shorter letter.” I’ll claim the busy excuse. But it’s getting better! A little better, all the time!
PS. Dear Future Dan who may be looking up this post in the archives, to sip on the sweet nectar of your (college) memories: at age 21 you promised never to lose your idealism. How are you doing?
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